Alan Crowhurst (Getty Images)
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The Ridler: Was a controversial 50-1 winner of the Norfolk Stakes at Royal Ascot in June
Alan Crowhurst (Getty Images)
By James Stevens
The appeal committee which rejected Amo Racing’s bid to overturn the Norfolk Stakes result has called for a review of UK racing interference rules.
In a lengthy written explanation of his findings keeping The Ridler as the winner of the controversial Royal Ascot racethe panel suggested that any review should go beyond “merely limiting itself to the issue of sanctions”.
Dave Loughnane, coach of Amo-owned Norfolk finalist Walbank, backed the panel’s recommendation and hoped the incident would lead to a change in the interference rules, a subject of controversy throughout the summer.
In response, the BHA reiterated its commitment to reviewing the Sanctions and Procedures Guidance in a consultation later this year. However, the governing body stopped short of what the panel, led by Chairman Bruce Blair QC, suggested should be a “broad review” of the interference, which it said would be “desirable and could be very beneficial.”
The Ridler interfered with second and third Norfolk, Walbank and Crispy Cat, both of which belong to Kia Joorabchian’s Amo operation. The appeal panel strongly criticized jockey Paul Hanagan’s ride, saying it “was poor, reprehensible and obviously culpable”.
Walbank manager Loughnane, who was frustrated but not surprised the owner’s appeal was unsuccessful, hopes the incident, which he likened to “professional misconduct”, could spark change.
Loughnane said: “If what we’ve been through is for the greater good of racing and getting them to sit down and take a look at the rules and the way people ride, there will be hardship. good to get out.
“It might change something in the long run – you wouldn’t be allowed to commit professional misconduct in another sport. It needs to be thought about and hopefully it will all bring something better for the sport.”
Sky Sports Racing
” title=”The Ridler (red) clings badly to his left and begins to cruise past his Royal Ascot rivals” class=”js-imageLoader” data-at-xn=”https://www.rp-assets. com/images/news/2022/06/16/111368-medium.jpeg” data-br-n=”https://www.rp-assets.com/images/news/2022/06/16/111368-medium .jpeg ” data-br-m=”https://www.rp-assets.com/images/news/2022/06/16/111368-large.jpeg” data-br-w=”https://www .rp-assets.com/images/news/2022/06/16/111368-large.jpeg” data-br-xw=”https://www.rp-assets.com/images/news/2022/06/ 16/ 111368-large.jpeg” onclick=”return false;”>
The Ridler (red) clings badly to his left and begins to cruise past his Royal Ascot rivals
Sky Sports Racing
Norfolk, a saga that featured a two-month wait for the appeal and then a six-hour hearing last week before a verdict was finally announced on Wednesday, was not the only case of interference very publicized this summer.
In July, it was again a hot topic when Robert Havlin had his five-day reckless driving ban overturned aboard Free Wind in Lancashire Oaks. The case was not even appealed after the BHA reviewed the decision made by the stewards.
Additionally, there was an appeal over a three-day reckless driving ban for Tom Marquand, resumed after the Group 3 win at Goodwood, which was dismissed last month.
Responding to the Norfolk Stakes verdict, the BHA also pointed to the international harmonization of interference rules and that other nations such as France have “aligned more with the British model in recent years”.
A BHA spokesperson said: “The rules were rewritten in 2019 following extensive industry consultation and the BHA agreed with the views of members and stakeholders at the time. that the substance of the rules should not be changed by this process.
“Indeed, the rules for interference are slowly harmonizing globally, and the model applied in Britain is the same as in all other major racing countries other than the United States and Canada, d other countries like France aligning themselves with the British model in recent years.
“The BHA has, however, as previously stated, committed to reviewing sanctions guidelines and procedures, including, but not limited to, sanctions, categorization of offenses and guidelines relating to conduct offenses, and will carry out this work in the coming months.
“It is important to the sport and its customers that the regulatory process provides effective race day decision-making in a timely and professional manner, just as the BHA Stewards did at Royal Ascot after the Norfolk Stakes.”
Ryan Pierse (Getty Images)
” title=”The Ridler and Paul Hanagan win the Norfolk Stakes, but the pair drift on the track” class=”js-imageLoader” data-at-xn=”https://www.rp-assets.com/images /news/2022/06/16/111411-medium.jpeg” data-br-n=”https://fooday.shop/wp-content/uploads/2022/08/1661974550_849_Calls-for-thorough-review-of-interference-after-Norfolk-appeal-lost.jpeg” data-br-m=”https://www.rp-assets.com/images/news/2022/06/16/111411-large.jpeg” data-br-w=”https://www.rp- assets .com/images/news/2022/06/16/111411-large.jpeg” data-br-xw=”https://www.rp-assets.com/images/news/2022/06/16/111411 – large.jpeg” onclick=”return false;”>
The Ridler and Paul Hanagan win the Norfolk Stakes, but the pair drift on the track
Ryan Pierse (Getty Images)
Although the panel rejected the appeal presented by Joorabchian’s Amo operation, Hanagan’s ride on The Ridler in Norfolk, which received a ten-day ban, was censored even though it did not constitute, at their opinion, dangerous.
The panel said: “His inattention and misjudgment were not defensible. He is a hugely experienced jockey (with nearly 17,000 races and 2,200 winners behind him) and should have done much better. It was a bad example of high-level reckless driving and fully deserved a suspension of actual substance.”
Amo argued that The Ridler should be disqualified or demoted for veering sharply across the track under Hanagan and causing interference with the placed horses, the second being beaten by a length and three-quarters and the third by two lengths.
Rory Mac Neice, representing Joorabchian, said the jockey rode dangerously and therefore his mount should be disqualified, while attorneys Roderick Moore, for Hanagan, and Louis Weston, for the BHA, argued against the riding allegation dangerous and stressed that the interference came for a “very short time”.
However, the claim that the winning ride should be considered unsafe was dismissed. “We cannot argue that what happened by way of interference either at Crispy Cat or at [fourth] Brave Nation amounted to serious interference,” the panel wrote.
A second ground of appeal suggesting that Crispy Cat would have won the race but for the interference was also dismissed. In the opinion of the committee, this chance was described as “slim”.
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